How Beautiful We Were: African trauma and corporate greed

Imbolo Mbue’s shifting narrative tells of revenge after oil company’s carnage in village

Imbolo Mbue renders in poignant detail how trauma manifests differently for each individual in the fictional village of Kosawa.

Imbolo Mbue renders in poignant detail how trauma manifests differently for each individual in the fictional village of Kosawa.

Behold the Dreamers was one of my favourite debuts of the last decade. Engaging storyline and effervescent dialogues made its author Imbolo Mbue a writer to watch out for.

Naturally then, I was eager to read her follow-up, more so since it seemed completely different from its predecessor. While Mbue’s debut was a compelling portrayal of an immigrant family’s struggle in a new land, How Beautiful We Were is set in the fictional African village of Kosawa which has been ravaged by a greedy US oil corporation.

The Irish Times
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